A united Opposition on Sunday launched a scathing attack on Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and called for a return of ballot papers, pointing that several nations have gone back to the traditional system.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, who on Saturday met Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora to raise the issue of EVM malfunctioning, said 21 political parties have demanded verification of VVPAT paper trails of 50 per cent of the EVMs.
Addressing the media after the meeting, Naidu had said: “Even advanced countries such as Germany and Netherlands have opted for ballot papers. Paper trail is indispensable for EVMs. The confidence of the voter can only be restored through paper trail machines.”
On Sunday, he said that the poll panel was not agreeing to the opposition's demand that at least 50 per cent of paper trails be verified with EVMs. "EC is acting under BJP, they are not correct, they have to act impartially which they are not doing. Also, we doubt even EVMs are under manipulation and that's why we are demanding 50% counting of VVPATs. They are not agreeing," he said.
Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said opposition parties will approach the Supreme Court seeking a direction to the EC for counting of at least 50 per cent of the VVPAT slips with the EVMs in every assembly segment.
He said the opposition parties will carry out a nationwide campaign on the issue of discrepancies in EVMs.
"We do not think the EC is doing enough to address issue of EVM malfunctioning," Singhvi alleged.
The Supreme Court on Monday directed the EC to increase random matching of VVPAT slips with EVMs to five polling booths per assembly segment, from one at present, in the Lok Sabha polls, saying it will provide greater satisfaction not just to political parties but the entire electorate.